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Danks' first career homer a walk-off as White Sox beat A's

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- Jordan Danks stepped to the plate in the ninth inning and imagined himself hitting a game-winning home run.

Then he did it.

Danks hit his first major-league homer in the bottom of the ninth and the Chicago White Sox overcame a three-run deficit to beat the Oakland Athletics 4-3 on Friday night.

"Being late in the game, especially bottom of the ninth, it's something that everybody dreams about their whole life," Danks said. "Right before that I saw myself doing it and it was just one of those things. It was just awesome."

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With two outs in the ninth, Danks sent the first pitch he saw from Pat Neshek (1-1) deep into the right-field seats for Chicago's fourth solo shot of the game. Dayan Viciedo, A.J. Pierzynski and Alexei Ramirez also connected.

Brett Myers (1-1) pitched a scoreless inning to help the AL Central leaders win for the 11th time in 16 games. Viciedo tied it at 3 with his homer in the seventh, snapping a 5-for-43 slide.

Before the game, the White Sox placed All-Star slugger Paul Konerko on the seven-day concussion disabled list. The first baseman took an elbow to the right temple area Tuesday on a close play at first and is eligible to return Aug. 17.

"It's not going to be easy not having him in the lineup," Chicago manager Robin Ventura said. "It's the best thing for him to get him back at full strength. We're just going to have to find ways to have guys like Jordan Danks come through in ways like that."

The White Sox won for the 14th time in 18 home games and maintained a one-game lead over second-place Detroit.

Brandon Moss hit a two-run homer for Oakland.

Brandon McCarthy came off the disabled list to make his first start for the A's since June 19. He had been sidelined with a strained shoulder.

The right-hander was staked to an early 3-0 lead but couldn't hold it, allowing a season-high three home runs.

"You don't see that often, but they were four pitches that were hittable pitches and they took advantage of all of them," Athletics manager Bob Melvin said.

Pierzynski extended his career high with his 22nd homer in the second and Ramirez hit a hanging curve out to left in the fourth, his fifth of the year.

"It's sort of nice to look up there and see some good numbers so far," Pierzynski said. "But the biggest thing, we're winning and that makes up for all of it."

McCarthy, who broke into the majors with the White Sox in 2005, was chased by Viciedo's drive. He went six-plus innings, allowing three runs and six hits.

Moss provided the big early blow for Oakland. After Chris Carter's ground-rule double leading off the second, he hit a towering home run down the right-field line off starter Gavin Floyd to give the Athletics a 3-0 cushion.

Floyd allowed seven runners in the first three innings, but pitched into the seventh. He gave up three runs and seven hits. The White Sox bullpen backed him up with three scoreless innings.

"It's kind of been like that the last couple games," Floyd said. "But it is what it is. I've got to go out there and compete and try to keep the team in the game. It's not always going to be like that, but when it does happen I'm going to battle my butt off to try to put up zeros."

Oakland got on the board in the first inning on an RBI groundout by Josh Reddick.

Notes

  • Oakland announced starting pitchers Tommy Milone and Jarrod Parker would be pushed back and LHP Travis Blackley will make a spot start Saturday. Parker is expected to start Tuesday in Kansas City and Milone next Friday against Cleveland.
  • The White Sox send LHP Francisco Liriano (3-10, 5.03 ERA) to the mound against Blackley (4-3, 3.30) on Saturday.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Jordan Danks (right) wins it for the White Sox, who keep their one-game lead in the AL Central over Detroit.  (AP)
Jordan Danks (right) wins it for the White Sox, who keep their one-game lead in the AL Central over Detroit. (AP)

Players of the Game
Chicago

A. Ramirez
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
Oakland

B. Moss
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Oakland Athletics
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Coco Crisp, CF3100203 .252
Jemile Weeks, 2B4020001 .221
Josh Reddick, RF5001023 .257
Yoenis Cespedes, LF3010021 .307
Chris Carter, 1B4110024 .266
Brandon Moss, DH3112111 .234
Brandon Inge, 3B4000013 .215
Derek Norris, C4010020 .206
Cliff Pennington, SS3010101 .197
Totals33373410  
Batting
2B - Chris Carter (4, Floyd), Derek Norris (4, Floyd)
3B - Cliff Pennington (2, Floyd)
HR - Brandon Moss (12, Floyd)
SH - Jemile Weeks (7)
RBI - Josh Reddick (59), Brandon Moss 2 (24)
SB - Coco Crisp (25, 3rd base off Floyd/Pierzynski)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Inge-Weeks-Carter
PB - Derek Norris (3)
Oakland Athletics
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Brandon McCarthy 6633143 2.68
Sean Doolittle 2100030 3.76
Pat Neshek (L,1-1) 0.2111011 2.08
HBP - Pierzynski (by Brandon McCarthy)
Pitches-Strikes - Brandon McCarthy 83-58, Sean Doolittle 32-22, Pat Neshek 11-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brandon McCarthy 3-10, Sean Doolittle 2-1
Batters Faced - Brandon McCarthy 25, Sean Doolittle 7, Pat Neshek 3
Chicago White Sox
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Alejandro De Aza, CF4010002 .291
Kevin Youkilis, 3B4000023 .238
Adam Dunn, 1B4010011 .207
Alex Rios, RF4000011 .315
A.J. Pierzynski, C3111000 .295
Alexei Ramirez, SS4121011 .264
Dayan Viciedo, DH4111011 .246
Jordan Danks, LF4111010 .265
Gordon Beckham, 2B2010110 .231
Totals3348418  
Batting
2B - Alejandro De Aza (24, McCarthy)
HR - A.J. Pierzynski (22, McCarthy), Alexei Ramirez (5, McCarthy), Dayan Viciedo (17, McCarthy), Jordan Danks (1, Neshek)
RBI - A.J. Pierzynski (64), Alexei Ramirez (51), Dayan Viciedo (52), Jordan Danks (3)
2-OUT RBI - Alexei Ramirez (18), Jordan Danks (1)
SB - Alejandro De Aza (21, 2nd base off Doolittle/Norris)
Team LOB - 5
Chicago White Sox
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Gavin Floyd 6733351 4.43
Leyson Septimo 0.1000010 5.00
Jesse Crain 0.2000020 2.12
Matt Thornton 1000020 3.56
Brett Myers (W,1-5) 1000100 2.75
HBP - Cespedes (by Gavin Floyd)
Pitches-Strikes - Gavin Floyd 99-61, Leyson Septimo 4-3, Jesse Crain 11-7, Matt Thornton 13-9, Brett Myers 12-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Gavin Floyd 6-7, Brett Myers 2-1
Batters Faced - Gavin Floyd 29, Leyson Septimo 1, Jesse Crain 2, Matt Thornton 3, Brett Myers 4
Game Information
Attendance - 25041
Game Time - 2:53
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Tony Randazzo, First Base - Bob Davidson, Second Base - Tim Welke, Third Base - Todd Tichenor